Counterfeit PhDs Worse Than Boko Haram, Herdsmen – Ex-VC
By Nedum Noble
Former Vice Chancellor of Michael Okpara University of Agriculture, Umudike, Prof. Ikenna Onyido has expressed worry over the increasing spate of counterfeit PhDs in most Nigerian universities.
He called for adequate sanctions regimes to curb the ugly development, which he said, were more threatening to the country than the Boko Haram and herdsmen menace.
Onyido spoke at the Nnamdi Azikiwe University, Awka, Anambra State during the 55th meeting of the committee of Deans of Post Graduate Schools in Nigerian Universities while delivering a paper titled “The knowledge paradigm in the age of sustainable development: the relevance of the Nigerian post graduate school”.
He said such lecturers plagiarise their way to professorship, while adding that such practice was the bane of research and development in the country.
“A reasonable number of the thesis that pass through our schools contain plagiarised materials. These are the reasons we have ‘internet professors’ who plagiarise their way up, copying materials they know nothing about.
“I borrowed Prof Jeffrey Sachs’ phrase in the above(precious reference), and the difference between my borrowing Sachs’ title and what my colleagues do these days to become professors overnight is that while I acknowledge my source, these dubious, crooked colleagues of ours do not.
“In fact, a reasonable proportion of theses that pass through some of our post graduate schools contain massively plagiarised materials, just as some of our latter day professors in the Nigerian university system are internet professors.
Earlier, the Vice Chancellor of the institution, Prof. Joseph Ahaneku has expressed displeasure over the increasing cases of poor research works by university teachers in the country.
He attributed the negative trend to over dependence on internet as well as poor supervision such lecturers received during their post graduates studies.
“It is regrettable that there has been negative reports about the number and quality of research, particularly as it relates to originality, emanating from Nigerian universities, perceptions which are by no means frivolous.
“Sadly enough, some university teachers are now making devious use of the internet to manufacture research publications which have neither broken new grounds nor expanded the frontiers of knowledge.
“It is possible that this could be attributed to to their poor research competences, arising from the poor supervision they had received during their post graduates studies from teachers/supervisors, themselves lacking in the necessary skills,” he said.
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